We’ve know since April last year that God has called us to Romania. God enabled us to visit Romania just before Easter 2019. While we were there it was clearly evident that the Lord was calling us to move there as missionaries. Since then we have been praying and searching for a Mission Organization to sponsor and help us to move there.
We’re happy to report that Friendship International has accepted our family to their organization. Friendship International has been doing Children’s Ministry in Romania through summer camps for 25 years. We are thrilled to have the privileged of serving with this interdenominational ministry that has the goal of meeting the needs of people at the intellectual, physical, spiritual, and social levels. Friendship International firmly believes in an indigenous ministry in every country where they serve. We were praying and looking for a ministry whose goal is to come along side the churches in Romania and encourage and strengthen the work that they are already doing. We are so thankful that the Lord led us to Friendship International!
The Lord has been preparing us to serve Him in another country for many years. We have been involved with youth and children’s ministry for years and have helped with VBS, 5-day clubs, Sunday School, Good News Club, and AWANA. We have had the joy and privilege of serving on several short term mission trips are part of a Spanish speaking congregation here in Nampa for the past 14 years. 3 years ago we decided to homeschool our children. I’m so thankful to have this experience! Homeschooling will be one less thing our family needs to adjust to in Romania. God has been at work to prepare us for serving him in Romania with everything that He has lead us to and through up to this point in our lives.
Some of you may be wondering what we plan to do in Romania. We plan to be involved with weekly children’s ministry, church services and Bible studies, as well as Friendship Camp. Of course when you are a missionary, you do what needs to be done whether that is cutting grass or transporting someone to the hospital. We’ve heard many seasoned missionaries say that things always look different on the field then how they imagined them being before they moved.
We are in the process of selling or donating most of our possessions and packing up the things that we are planning to move. Originally, we had planned to move to Romania on June 3rd, but because of Covid-19, we had to reschedule our time of departure. Currently, we are planning to move July 16. We have learned through this time of quarantine the deep truth of Proverbs 16:9 “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.” We had planned to visit as many churches as possible before we moved, but all of that came to a stop shortly after we met with the director of Friendship International in March. While he was visiting us, everything began to be shut down due to Covid-19. Since we are not able to ask for prayer and ministry support in the usual manner, please pray for us and share about this ministry with anyone who would be willing to pray. This is a very big life change for our family, and while we are very excited, we know that serving in Romania will not be without challenges!
Flexibility and Adapting
I feel like the Lord has given us a crash course in flexibility and adapting through this whole time of quarantine. We learned to teach Good News Club online, attend the children’s extra curricular activities online, and David has been very involved with getting our church’s services on Facebook Live. Our entire calendar had been full from March until our original departure date in June. All of that was cancelled. We had originally planned to help with Friendship Camp in Romania this summer, but it is unknown whether camp will be allowed to be held. We know and trust that the Lord is in Control!!! None of this is a surprise to Him! Several people have told me that they doubt if we will be able to move to Romania this year. I am confident that God who has called us will bring to pass our move to Romania and His plans for us there in the fullness of His time! He is a good father and He knows what He is doing! We know that even if camp cannot be held this summer, there is plenty of other work that we can help with.
Will you partner with us in prayer? We are planning to communicate with people mostly through email, Facebook, and Friendship International’s website. If you did not receive this update via email, that means we do not have your email contact. Because of the cost of postage, we will not be able to send out very many traditional prayer letters through the mail. If you want to receive regular updates from our family, please sign up for our updates at: Friendshipintl.org/stones
Our family’s prayer requests and praises at this time are:
- The Lord led us to Friendship International and we have been accepted.
- We were able to change the dates of our departure tickets without much trouble.
- We have already made some friends and contacts in Romania.
- We have experience with homeschooling.
- David is able to keep his current job and will work from home in Romania as he does here in Idaho.
- We are healthy and blessed, eagerly expecting what the Lord has in store for us.
- For protection, safety, and provision as we move.
- For all of those effected by Covid-19. Many of those living on the edge of poverty in Romania before the pandemic are really struggling now.
- For our family to adjust to life in Romania.
- For continuing and deepening friendships in Romania.
- That we will be able to learn the language and culture quickly.
- That we will be a light and a blessing.
- For unity among all workers.
- That we will find a good balance between ministry and family life.
While we are very grateful that David will be able to keep his current job and we will not be dependent on donations for our family’s income, we cannot finance all the ministry needs. Please prayerfully consider giving to Friendship International. You can designate your gift for Friendship Camp. There is a great need for renovation of the camp facility and for a camp kitchen to be built.
Thank you for praying for us! We cannot hope to be effective in ministry without partners in prayer!!! You are a vital part of our ministry!
Thank you, in Christ ~ the Stones